Hundreds of pastors running for office this November hoping to make a change in American politics

Pastor Mark Harris is running for the ninth congressional district in North Carolina as he leads the campaign to void protections for LGBT members in Charlotte.(Facebook/Mark Harris)

Hundreds of pastors in the United States are running for office this November, hoping to make a change in American politics.

Last year, Pastor Rob McCoy ran for City Council in Thousand Oaks, California and won.

"I'm in exile in my own state and my own nation and this is a directive that God gave me, praying for the peace of the city locally," said McCoy, according to CBN News.

Charlotte, North Carolina pastor Mark Harris is running for the ninth congressional district in the state.

Harris, senior pastor at First Baptist Church, said, "I'm committed to advancing the conservative principles that are representative of hard-working families in the ninth district," the Charlotte Observer reports.

The pastor is known for leading the campaign to void protections for LGBTs in Charlotte.

Pastors are running this year in races from local schools boards to Congress.

Leading the effort to support pastors to run for public office is the American Renewal Project, which has a network of 10,000 pastors and headed by evangelical Republican political leader David Lane, according to Reuters.

"This is a fundamental shift in strategy," said John Fea, a history professor at Christian Messiah College. "Rather than forcing this from the top down, this is about a grassroots approach to changing the culture by embedding ministers in local politics from the ground up."

California Republican Assemblywoman Shannon Grove said experience is not necessary.

"I want you to know that it doesn't take experience; it doesn't take qualifications. God will call you and if you are called, He will qualify you," she told CBN News.

Pastors are running for office to make a change in the U.S. in light of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that legalised gay marriage and the issue of transgender bathroom policies.

"Do you think that if people on your deacon board or pastoral board were serving on the school board that you would be discussing same-sex bathrooms?' Grove asked.

U.S. Senator James Lankford, who spent 15 years in the Southern Baptist ministry, said he is excited about the surge of pastors running for office.

"While some people try and paint it as extraordinary, it's not. It's actually a very normal American thing – people who love our country and who love God and love other people to get engaged in the political process. I'm excited it's happening. It should be a conversation that's bubbling up around the country," he said.

McCoy said the main aim is to rebuild America along the lines of Psalm 11:3.

"The answer to the question that the Psalmist asked that if 'the foundations are destroyed what can the righteous do?'' is very simple: rebuild the foundation," he said.